Dionisio Foianini

Dr. Dionisio Foianini, son of an Italian father and a Bolivian mother, grew up in central Bolivia not far from most of Standard Oil's Bolivian fields. After studying pharmacy in Italy, where he came to admire Benito Mussolini's fascism,[1] Foianini returned to Bolivia before the Chaco War broke out and was put in charge of munitions manufacture. During the war, he went on a secret mission to Argentina and organized Bolivian espionage behind Paraguayan lines. When the war ended, Foianini organized the nationalization of the Standard Oil fields and set up a State Petroleum Board.[2] After Germán Busch organized a coup in 1937, Foianini became Minister of Mines and Petroleum in Busch's Cabinet.[3]

As of 1995, Foianini was still alive, in the town of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia.[4]

The area called Dionisio Foianini Triangle on the border with Paraguay and Brazil is named after him. Puerto Busch, which is named after Germán Busch, is located in the triangle.


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